Yesterday I participated in the 2017 Richmond Road Races. This race is organized by Run Ottawa, the same organizers who run The Ottawa Race Weekend. I have never run this race before, mostly because of the distance I would have to travel. That is no longer an excuse as now I live less than 15 minutes from the start ;-). The race start/finish is at South Carleton Secondary School, therefore lots of parking and an inside waiting location. If you join Run Ottawa and pay the membership fee, you are allowed one free race per year (not including Race Weekend). I paid my 2017 fee and therefore paid $0 for this race. Included in the price (which is $45 if you are not a member, $35 for members) was a chip timed race, long sleeve shirt, a sparkle medal, $10 Bushtukah coupon, a full chili meal (chili, bread, muffin and fruit) after the race and a beer.
Once again Run Ottawa has hit it out of the park in terms of perks in race!
I arrived at the race location at 9am, parked and checked out how slippery the roads were. Luckily, no slipping was present. I waited inside and talked to fellow Team Awesome members and just relaxed. The 10K runners went out at 10am, and I quickly went to the washroom and waited for a few more minutes before heading outside. The race was supposed to start at 10:10, and I went outside at 10:06. The beauty of small races! You cannot pull that stuff at Race Weekend!
There were 200 of us in the 5K. Nice and small. I saw Kristi’s kids at the start and hovered near them as I knew that they are roughly the same speed as me. Twitter friend, Dan was also there and I waved at him. The race started and according to Dan, I booked it out of there. Of course, in my waiting for the race, I did something to my watch and did not start it. I have zero clue on how fast I ran that 1st KM, but apparently it was fast. I did slow down after 300m or so and tried to get into a groove.
The race is along some country roads and with the size of the race, those of us at the front were pretty much running single file. I will note that this race felt more difficult for me. About 2K in, I already felt gassed and really just wanted to not let too many people pass me. Just before 2K, we went down a dirt road which was interesting for footing. It wasn’t too bad, but I had to keep an eye on any big holes/ice patches. I soon saw the turn around point and realized I wasn’t too far from the lead runners.
At this point in the race, I had settled into ‘tempo mode” which is just under 5:30/km. I took a pretty decent break in November/December and only on week 2 of the run streak. With only a few ‘faster’ runs and zero speed work, I knew that getting close to sub-25 was a long shot. The few times I have run under 25 have always followed some track sessions. That and whenever I wear constricting pants, I feel like I cannot run faster. Last time I wear those pants in a race situation. I also had some tightness in my left calf – pretty typical for this time of year when I wear my winter boots every day. My left leg is very tight right now and I’m having a hard time finding time to see my RMT.
Soon enough, I was on the last KM and had the pleasure of starting at the finish line up ahead for 5 minutes. Torture! I concentrated on the finish line and went under the line at 25:48. Not bad! I came in 34th overall, 17th Female and 5th in my category. In terms of Run Ottawa Members (we have a separate category) – I came in 4th overall, 3rd female and 1st in the 30-39 category. Sweet.
I somehow acquired an award mug! I thought only top 3 in the category won an award (I was 4th after the top in my group won 3rd), but maybe it was because of my Run Ottawa standings? Who knows and who cares – such a sweet mug!
We took a few photos with the Team Awesome crew and chatted. As I was watching the awards being handed out with fellow Team Awesome member, Harold by the Beau’s tent- they announced that everyone had already had a beer and we could get seconds. Harold and I were very happy about being right there! Soon after that, I found out I won a mug. Not sure what made me more happy.
All in all, it was a fantastic race! I will be back next year and hope that you select the race too!